Canadians are divided over whether or not the CERB should be stopped for good
The introduction of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) came as a huge relief to thousands of Canadians after COVID-19 shuttered businesses across the country back in March.
While Canada is now well on its way to fully reopening, public opinion on whether or not CERB should continue is still very much divided.
A new poll conducted by Leger revealed that 41 per cent of Canadians believe the federal government should immediately and quickly begin to scale back COVID-19 support programs and payments, given the size of the current deficit.
A slightly higher percentage, 44 per cent, think that the government should not end the payments, while the other 15 per cent are unsure.
Last week, the federal government announced an estimated $343-billion deficit.
The poll showed that 78 per cent of Canadians are worried about the size of the deficit and how it may affect Canada in the long term.
In recent weeks, the issue of CERB has been a point of contention which has sparked many social media debates.
I have to say again how happy I am with the response of the Government of Canada to this crisis. Between CERB and the Wage Subsidy and all their supports for the provinces they really have done a magnificent job.— Terry Hussey (@Terry_Hussey) July 14, 2020
Let's keep that border closed and keep helping each other.
While some people have lauded the government's response to unemployment during the pandemic, other people think that it's now time for Canadians to get back to work.
As I mentioned in a previous tweet... My daughter is clocking crazy hours at her "part-time" job because the store is struggling to get staff back to work. Many are riding out the CERB as long as possible (claiming they don't feel it's safe yet to return to work). https://t.co/AqU2unxlzq— Queen Paola 🇨🇦 🇮🇹 🇩🇪 (@PaolaQP1231) July 14, 2020
The news comes as Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister called on the government to make changes to CERB in an effort to get people back in jobs.
"CERB is increasingly acting as a work disincentive to some Canadians, as it penalizes them financially for returning to work full time," said Pallister.
"Businesses need workers as they restart. Changing CERB so returning workers can keep some of this benefit, rather than lose it all at once, would help both businesses and workers."
Other findings in the survey revealed that, when it comes to the COVID-19 crisis, 40 per cent of Canadians still think the worst is yet to come.
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